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Liability insurance for freelance editors/etc.

(7 Posts)
Cleebourg Sat 03-Jan-15 13:21:08

Any freelance editors/proofreaders/etc. out there with experience/knowledge of liability insurance? I've never felt I needed it (at worst I could be blamed for poor punctuation) and clients have either agreed or have accepted responsibility themselves.

Now I've expanded areas I work in and am finding 'liability' comes up frequently in contracts. So far I have successfully argued that the clauses don't apply: e.g. I am picking up other people's mistakes and there is at least one interface between me and doom (something going out wrong), so ultimate responsibility for an error would not lie with me. Now I have another contract with a new client to sign and a New Year resolution not to ignore the inconvenient (it's early days). Does anyone have any thoughts?

And where would I go for such insurance if I do need it? How much might I be looking at?

I expect to have to wait for a reply so will bump a few times as necessary.

museumum Sat 03-Jan-15 13:28:01

I am not in your line of work but have professional indemnity insurance with insure2day who I would recommend.
I think you mean professional indemnity insurance rather than public liability because as you say I can't see how you could be responsible for financial consequences to a member of the public but you could cause a lot of cost to your client. If you are employed to proof read something and missed a serious error causing need for a whole reprint then surely that would be your fault? That's what you probably want insurance against.
It's pretty easy to get a quote or s few to compare. Why not Google "professional indemnity for proofreading"?

museumum Sat 03-Jan-15 13:29:55

Someone like this?

Cleebourg Sat 03-Jan-15 13:41:44

Thanks a lot, I'll look up your company and do some searching.

It's claims by anyone against the company arising out of my error. It's stretching a point, but a misplaced comma or decimal point could conceivably cause medical or environmental/economic damage on some scale. My stance has always been that companies/organizations should have umbrella insurance for this, but I suppose I will eventually come up against someone who does not and need my own. Or turn the work down, always an option, and might be the best one.

CocktailQueen Sat 03-Jan-15 22:35:55

Have a look at the Society of Editors and Proofreaders website - they gave info about this. Hiscox, bluefin or first assist may be able to help.

However, you don't need to sign a contract if you are unhappy with it - you can ask for clauses to be struck out.

Lots of editors do have liability insurance, and I can see why, if you are working in an area where a mistake could conceivably result in injury or illness or death or loss of money - but I don't.

Cleebourg Sun 04-Jan-15 11:13:00

Thanks, I'll look. With regard to your second paragraph, I do that habitually and haven't so far met opposition, but inclusion of such clauses is getting more frequent so I thought I ought to look into what I could and should do.

One thing would bother me about accepting liability and taking out insurance cover: I couldn't afford the time to fight a case so it would wipe out my business (and never mind the impact on my mental well-being). I think continuing to refuse to accept such clauses will have to be the way to go. It's not reasonable to expect a small cog to take responsibility for a multi-input process.

CocktailQueen Sun 04-Jan-15 18:43:31

Nope, i agree with you Cleebourg, but it is getting more common.

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